Tuesday 18 June 2019

186 - phantasies

Headless Ghost (1959 - B/W) -  CFF-type nonsense withClive Revill. Unsurprisingly, director  Peter Graham Scott's future was  in kids' TV. Dailymotion.

The Hand (1960 - B/W) -Shonky postwar revenge quickie by   Ray Cooney, with Ronald Leigh Hunt.

Space-Men  (1960) - Basically the same scene of space-helmeted gooks over and over, though Margheriti casts a  black American, Archie Savage and  seemingly tries to make him look Caucasian.
Helmets used in the equally execrable  War  of the Planets (1966)  and War Between The Planets  (1966), spinoffs of  the idiotic but  visual Wild Wild  Planet (1966). The Snow   Devils   (1967), the weirdest  of Margheriti's 60s spaceoperas, written  by Batman creator Bill Finger   is still  mostly the same, and wastes its Yeti-in-space concept.

Obras maestras del terror (1960- B/W) - Incomprehensible. adapted from Narciso Ibanez Menta  and Serrador's pre-3-2-1 ANTHOLOGY series.

Visit To A  Small  Planet (1960)/The Nutty  Professor (1963)/Way  Way Out (1966)  -    Way  WayOut has the smallest UN  set I've seen.   Jerry Lewis   I  find silly,  when  he's doing his  schtick. He later  grew into a  decent character actor, though that was  probably Joseph Levitch.

Mistress  of  the World Part I (1960) - Finally found this, though only the first  of two films. An attractive  but confused slog through Thailand. A big proto-Eurospy pudding. Lino Ventura is wasted as  a henchman.  Ok.rued. Since watched the second and yes, it's a globetrotting ride around nowhere. Sabu is wasted. But hey, at least they cast an authentic Asian. 

Dead Eyes of London   (1961 - B/W)  - Gothy, dislikable EdgarWallace  mad science.Set in a London with American accents.

Devil's Partner (1961 -  B/W) - Devil-deal poverty row  zzzzzzz.

Ring of Terror (1961 - B/W)   - More ageing teen  prank agony.

Bloodlust! (1961 -  B/W) -  Teen Most Dangerous Game so bad you want everyone dead.

Homicidal (1961 - B/W) - It's Castle, so predictable.

Atlantis   The Lost Continent    (1961) - George Pal's would-be epic lacks the classically trained  bravado of Harryhausen's similar Greek  adventures. It's all very biblical set leftovers, a throwback  to the Universal nonsenses of years before. Ok.ru.

Valley  of the  Dragons (1961) - Mostly stock footage, padded out by Galwegian Sean McClory and Cesare Danova in LBDs fighting cavemen, supposedly based on Jules Verne's On  The Comet.

The Devil's Messenger (1961 - B/W) - Hokey,  boring failed TV  anthology hosted by Lon Chaney Jr.

Trauma (1962 -  B/W) - Boring Psycho-alike.

FIVE WEEKS IN A BALLOON (1962)- Better Verne. A solid character cast and  nice design ruined by Disney-ish goofiness from Irwin Allen.

Beauty And The Beast (1962)- Tales from Europe USA.
See  also THE MAGIC SWORD (1962) - Bert I. Gordon does the Singing, Ringing Tree meets The Kroftt Brothers.

The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962) - A weird film made stranger by the curved Cinerama process.  Pal channels Powell and  Pressburger. Ok.ru

Hand of Death (1962- B/W)  - Desert-based Ben Grimm-alike boredom.

Tower Of London (1962  - B/W) - Corman  and Price's dinner-theater Shakespeare. The (1939)  Karloff version at least has some production value.

The  Yesterday  Machine (1963 - B/W) - Texan Nazi amateurishness with Tim Holt.

Terrified (1963 - B/W) - Sleepy ghost town protoslasher.

The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze (1963 - B/W) - And never leave  Columbia, despite a sizeable chunk of the story set in the  UK. Amiable for what it is.

Monstrosity a.k.a. The Atomic Brain (1963) - Why does the intro speak of vampires? Feck   off.

X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes (1963) - Like  Corman doing Harold Robbins.

The  Terror (1963)   - Was this meant to be a mess?

House of  the  Damned  -   (1963 - B/W) - TVish, Sub-One Step Beyond. Ok.ru

The Brass Bottle (1964) - Sub-sitcom with Bird's Eye as  a  genie, Tony Randal  and pre-Jeannie Barbara  Eden, not as the  Genie.   Ok.ru.

Hercules Against the Moon Men (1964) - Dreadful peplum.

Curse of the Living Corpse (1964 - B/W) - Very odd attempt   at faux-Corman Poe/British horror.

The Blood Drinkers (1964) -  Partly tinted amateurish-but-inventive Filipino vampire  salvage weck.

The Tomb of Ligeia (1964) - Still has  the claustrophobic artifice of  the US-based Corman Poes, Price miscast but anything that gives Derek Francis a leading part isn't THAT bad.

Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine (1964) - Sub-Disney unfunniness.

Pinocchio in Outer Space (1965)-  Surprised Disney did not sue  Belvision.

Willy McBean and his  Magic Machine (1965) - Semi-forgettable Rankin/Bass time-travel weirdness, with  a Mexican monkey.

The Wizard of Mars (1965) -  Dayglo, over-tinted proto-Pyramids of Mars nightmare, complete with the superimposed,  barking head of John Carradine.

The Beach Girls and the Monster (1965 - B/W)  - Awful beachparty aquatics directed by Jon Hall.

SpaceFlight IC1 (1965 - B/W) - Dreary British space ark cryogenics. Dailymotion

Dark Intruder (1965 -  B/W) -  Failed, theatrically  released pilot, with Leslie   Nielsen in an atmospheric  but empty yellowed-up Chinatown.

Bloody  Pit of Horror (1965) - Better-shot than an Italian gore-gothic cheapie has any right to be.

Space Probe Taurus (1965- B/W) -Zzzz.

Deadly Bees (1966)- A  rewatch. Disappointing in every way. Frank Finlay's old age makeup looks nothing  like old Frank  Finlay, either  pre-his   first death in  1987(as Halliwell's Filmgoer's Companion claims), or after.

Cyborg 2087 (1966)  - Michael Rennie-Terminator wanders  about  western sets.

The Wild World of Batwoman (1966  - B/W)  - Amateurish jiggle nonsense.

Doctor Faustus (1967) - Taylor-Burton vanity-driven student production. Wigtastic. The Burtons revisited this territory in the modern day Ustinov obnoxiousness of Hammersmith is Out (1972). Ok.ru

The Unknown Man of Shandigor  (1967   - B/W) -  "I  want to be Alphaville".  ok.ru

Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed Up Zombies  (1967)- Brutal, hypnotically so.

She-Freak (1967) - Aptly  captures the drudgery  of a carnival. Not  to be confused with the worse She-Beast (1967)

Night Fright (1967) -  The Extra-Terrestrial Nasty!   Abysmal   60s  dimly lit amateurishness.

The Spirit is Willing  (1967)     - Goofy,   unfunny William Castle com  with  Sid  Caesar, Elizabeth Poldark and a country and Irish Carter brother looking kid.

Body Fever (1969)-  At least R.D. Steckler photographs  relatively well. Mundane P.I. stuff.

Target Harry (1969) - Roger Corman-directed pseudo-Eurospy Maltese Falcon dreariness, shot in Turkey with Vic Morrow and Victor Buono heading a Transatlantic cast. Milton Reid adds muscle.

Burn (1969) - Brando-as-Richard-Harris   plays William Walker in a  beautiful   yet  unlikeable mess of a film.

The Maltese Bippy (1969) - Unfunny.dated vehicle for Rowan and Martin. Ok.ru.

Scream Baby Scream! (1969)  - Sub-HG Lewis chud, weirdly written by Larry Cohen.

Eggshells (1969) -Tobe Hooper hippie  pretension.

Macunaíma (1969)-Brazilian adult baby gibberish from New Line.

The Yin and the Yang of Mr. Go (1970) - Yellowed James Mason and director   Burgess Meredith  plus  "Jeffrey Bridges" in a new age  Orientalist fiasco.

Bigfoot (1970) - Rubbish hillbilly  hairy jamboree.

The Revenge of Dr. X  (1970)  - Amateurish Japanese flytrap.

Pufnstuf (1970) - Jack Wild in the movie of the odd Kroftt kidvid. The full-body suited  creatures lack charm. The songs are awful yet catchy. Mama Cass turns up as witch.

Octaman (1971) - Rick Baker's ludicrous  monster the only highlight.

"SIMON, KING OF THE WITCHES" (1971) - Terrible Satanist muckraker.

A Clockwork  Orange (1971)- Part-sex  comedy played for shock, part-Northern kitchen sink parody, part sub-Python nonsense.

7 fois par jour (1971) - Quebecois Arab fantasy  surrealist comedic   artiness by Denis Heroux.

The Corpse Grinders (1971)  -  Ted V Mikels' film feels  like a home  movie made by the damned.
Blood Orgy of the She-Devils (1972) - Ted V Mikels weirdness. Simultaneously awful yet entrancing. Why  is there a medieval  clergyman?

Blood Legacy (1971)  - Late-occurring poverty row will-reading garbage.

The Reincarnate (1971) - Chinzy pre-Exorcist from   Canada wih a  Mrs. Milleresque theme.

Happy Birthday, Wanda June (1971)-  Like Mary Poppins  for hippies. Was young William Hickey  America's Melvyn Hayes? Heavily watched on ok.ru.

The Night God Screamed (1971) - Depressing Mansonia.

Premonition (1972) - Hippie shit.
Curse Of The Headless Horseman (1972)- More  western  hippie  shit.

Return To Boggy Creek (1977) -  Sub-Wilderness Family cheapery. Not to be  confused with the  monstrous Boggy Creek 2 (1985).

The Possession of Virginia  (1972) - Slow Quebecois Sannistttr  erotica.

Night Of The Cobra Woman (1972) - Semi-incomprehensible Filipino schlock.

Enter the Devil (1972) - What I imagine  30s pulp modern-westerns would have looked like if they'd continued into  the 70s.

The Deathmaster (1972) - Godawful Robert Quarry Mansonian vampire vanity project.

Endless  Night (1972) - Supernatural-infused  Christie adap, unsure to what  it is, reverts to psychedelia.

Encounter With The Unknown (1973) - Serling-narrated regional Night Gallery fan film.

The Mind Snatchers (1973) -  Mind-experiment drudgery with Joss Ackland and a young, Richard Madeley-ish Chris Walken.

Dark Places (1973) - Christopher Lee, Herbert Lom, Robert Hardy and  Joan Collins walk about a dowdy  house. Extremely boring.

Hannah, Queen of the Vampires (1973) - Beige  Spanish-American horror.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1974) - Feels rather too stately and therefore quite stiff. Needs some of that Dark Shadows giddiness. Also watched the 1977 BBC Count Dracula, Louis Jourdan silky but sinister presence, but it has its problems. It's too "BBC period drama", Frank Finlay's accent as a very Dutch Van Helsing, Whitby looks nice, but there's something about it that clashes.

Nuits Rouges (1974) - Franju-directed TV series reedited into a film. A load of pulp homage and some mumpsy about the Templars. Looks cheap, down to manky stock footage of the spinning Scotland Yard sign.
The Deathhead  Virgin  (1974)  -  Typical  Filipino barroom   brawl/aquatic   drivel.

Devil Times Five (1974) - A languid melodrama  enlivened by the OTT actions of the killer kids. Rewatch.

Mousey (1974) - Kirk Douglas stalks Jean Seberg around an America that either looks like Canada or Home Counties suburbia. Produced by Beryl Vertue for Associated London Films and Aida Young.

Phantom of the Paradise (1974)  -   An insufferable, incompetent  musical conusion. Ok.ru

The House on Skull Mountain  (1974) -The  Old Black House. Has  Victor French as the crusty hero, who is  coded mixed-race so he can be cousin to his black lover, and   civil  rights activist Xernona Clayton in an acting role.

Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold (1975) - Dopey, colourful but unentertaining Shaw Brothers coproduction, despite Norman Fell playing CIA agent Stanley Roper.   Ok.ru

A*P*E (1976) -  From  the producer of Schlock, almost the same film but with a King Kong knockoff, set in a Korean fairground.

Rattlers (1976)  -  Unconvincing,  dimly lit  snakes flick.

Crash (1976) - Band car-demon   kerfuffle.  Ok.ru

The Clown Murders (1976) - Sub-Straw Dogs Canuck slasher  notable  only for John Candy   and   some polo.

A Matter  of Time (1976) - AIP/Liza and  Vincente  make an Italian mockbuster of Hollywood  musicals.

Drive-In Massacre (1976) - Possibly the least exciting  horror film ever.

Sisters of Death (1976) - Ludicrous  Clemensesque sorority gubbins.
Not to  be confused  with the also-Clemensesque-but-dull Die Sister Die (1978).

Haunted (1977) - Hokey Southwestern 'orror  with Ann  Michelle c.Come Back, Mrs. Noah as a Native American.
Not to  be confused  with the also-dull-and-with-Aldo Ray  Haunts (1976).

Satan's Cheerleaders (1977)  - Dreadful sexcom.

The Believer's Heaven (1977) - Quite possibly the oddest film I have seen.  Ron Ormond puts visuals  to a  fire and  brimstone  lecture by   one Estus W Pirkle.

Track of the Moon Beast (1976) -  Amateurish nonsense, again Bill Finger.

Night Creature (1978)  - The highlight is the  Pleasence-panther hybrid.

Alien  Zone (1978) - Dull, non-SF portmanteau.

Vampire Hookers (1978)   - Godawful but professionally done Filipino trash. John  Carradine  plays Drac.

The Plumber (1979) - Odd Peter Weir telemovie, about a psychotic, somewhat laddish plumber. Interesting performance from Ivar Kants, but a lot of middle-class suburban m,ndanity common in Aussie soaps.

J Men Forever   (1979) -  Do you need drugs to  get  the Firesign Theatre? This serial mixtape has some choice  bits, but  a lot of it has dated into nonsense.

The Psychotronic Man (1978) - Unexciting.

The Alien Factor (1978) - Amateurish, bar the stop-motion.    See also Night Beast (1982).

The Capture Of Bigfoot (1979) - So dreadful even Lloyd Kaufman regrets owning it.

Up From The Depths (1979)- Amateurish-for-70s-Corman Jaws ripoff/spoof.

Charlie and the Talking Buzzard (1979)   - Young Dean Cain   pops up  in his stepdad's story of when Tristram Fourmile befriended dubbed over stock of  a bird.

The Godsend (1980) - Cannon UK horror which down to music feels like a Hammer House  of Horror.

The Formula  (1980)  -How did this get Oscar nominated for cinematography? It looks somewhere between early Troma and German television. Gielgud plays Max Von  Sydow. Brando plays David Huddleston.

Schizoid (1980)- Forgettable,unlikeable Cannon slasher.
See also The Burning   (1981), The  Prowler (1981).

Christmas Evil (1980) - A Taxi Driver Christmas.

The Attic (1980)- A strange curio. Carrie   Snodgress' life is  constantly ruined by pa Ray Milland. It seems either want to be another Repulsion  or  an  old fashioned gothic  melodrama.A sequel to 1973's The Killing Kind.

The   Hand  (1981) -   Dreadful Michael Caine  horror starring Maurice as a haunted Barry Windsor-Smith roman á clef, working on a Conan-like comic, Mandro.

Full Moon  High (1981)-  Dreadful  yet  moments of  Larry Cohen's invention shine  through.

A Day of Judgment (1981)-  Incompetent period-set suspense-free religious horror.

Hell Night  (1981) - Needs some older character support. Otherwise undistinguished though well-done.

Night of the Zombies (1981)  - Ambitious but incompetent  no-budget horror shot  in  Germany.

The Nesting (1981)- Godawful haunted brothel(?) Hamlet ad.  Dreary middle-aged terror.

Lovespell (1981)   -Incredibly shonky  Irish adap of Tris and Isolde. Kate Mulgrew's accent wanders. Richard Burton waits  to  be paid. Messrs Toibin and Cusack appear per   something made  here  at that time.

Rana: The Legend of Shadow Lake (1981) - Sub-Sunn Classics wildlife adventure with a frogmonster.

Deadly Blessing (1981)  - Typical Craven mouthings of nonsense "with meaning". Despite an odd trans-twist and Borgnine as an Am-ish nutter.

REWATCHED CAT  PEOPLE (1982). Only  good thing is  Ruby Dee.

Alicja (1982) - Apple-ish musical with Jack   Wild, Paul Nicholas, Jean PierreCassel, Susannah York, Peter   Straker and Lulu's voice.

Big Meat Eater (1982) - Confused, ham-fisted Canadian 50s SF parody with a black butcher who  is supposedly an Iraqi alien. Ok.ru

Safari 3000 (1982) -  Semi-Death Race comedy drudgery with David Carradine,Stockard Channing and a Brucie-ish Vader-helmeted Christopher Lee.

Deadly Eyes (1982) -  Boring James Herbert adap by Golden Harvest, rat-dogs devastating Toronto.

Hysterical (1983)-  Blurry, confused  horror "comedy" by  one-time Monkhouse stooges the Hudson Brothers.

The Man   Who Wasn't There (1983) - Had to skipwatch every 30 seconds after the first ten mins. Brownface-heavy  sub-Man with Two Brains invisible spy movie with Steve  Guttenberg.

The Demons of Ludlow (1983) -  Haunted by amateur  dramatics in powdered wigs.   Again from Bill  Rebane, like Rana and The   Capture of Bigfoot. His film The Game (1984) may be the  worst photographed film I have ever  seen.

I Am the Cheese (1983) -  The Prisoner for  twerpy  high school sprinters.
See also a  disaff  equiv, the  Dennis Potteresque I Never Promised You a Rose Garden (1977)

The Enchanted (1984)  - Southern emptiness with Julius Harris.

Blind Date (1984) - Dreadful Mastorakis erotica despite an  unlikely appearance from Scots comedy staple Gerard Kelly

The Strangeness (1985) -  Dimly-lit but enthusiastically made horror.

Night Train to Terror (1985) - A  hopeless  salvage-job anthology.

Transylvania 6-5000  (1985) -  Dreadful,bland,expensive 80s horror comedy.
Hellhole (1985)-  Sleazy though colourful mad science/women in  prison film.

The Passing (1985) -  Psychedelic, ambitious amateur rejuvenation saga.

Radioactive Dreams (1985)- Idiotic newwave Mad Max noir.

Wired to Kill (1986) - Basically Children of Castor from Cruise of the Gods, but American.

Solarbabies (1986) -Mel  Brooks apocalypteen nonsense.Alexei Sayle!

Critters (1986)/Critters 2 (1988) -  Bland, serviceable video   fare that try to be quirky yet workmanlike in that  odd mid-to-late80s way.  Critters 3 (1991) is even less memorable were it not for Leonard DiCaprio (sic)  popping up.  Critters IV (1992)  wastes Angela Bassett.

Ghost Fever (1987) -  Ghastly comedy, a post-Jeffersons Sherman Hemsley infested all his money in this. 

Cherry 2000 (1987)-I like  the style, but David "Pulaski" Andrews is a plank.
Doin' Time On Planet Earth (1988) - Dull teen  comedy  by  Walter Matthau's son.

Bloodstone (1988) - Indian-American Jonesploitation, Chris Neame as baddie, plus inevitable Bob Christo.  Despite looking like a Bollywood film of 1988, Klingon Charlie Brill dons boot polish  as a local inspector. Rewatching it on bluray a year later, and it looks infinitely better. Hero Brett Stimely is like a bad waxwork of Nick Nolte, but he's dubbed by yer actual David Soul and he's really second fiddle to the always awesome Indian superstar Rajinikath, who is deservedly first billed on the main cast list, while Stimely is billed first on the posters and opening. 

Midnight Movie Massacre (1988) - Asinine comedy.

Arena (1989) - Great  creature work. But it can't help but look tacky.

Sundown - The Vampire in Retreat (1989) - Wants to be fun, but comes over as Strange Invaders with vampires.

Rockula (1989) - Thanks William Bibbiani for recommending this. It  reminded me a  bit of Adventures   of Pete and Pete, but Dean  Cameron is strident, to say the least.

Moontrap (1989)  -    A  poor man's Lifeforce  USA.

Slipstream (1989) -British attempt at a sci-fi hit.  Bob Peck a convincingly daffy android. But everything else fails to click, even redneck Robbie Coltrane.

The Dark Side Of The Moon (1990) - An interesting idea (Bermuda Triangle connects to the Moon-  basically an adaptation of   that Sunday Sport headline about the WW2 bomber on the Moon) handled without verve, energy or style.

Killer Tomatoes Eat France! (1992)-  Almost passes  by  being  deliriously  stupid.

Mindwarp   (1992) - More attractive than  usual post-apocalyptic runaround by Fangoria.

Ed And His Dead Mother (1993)  -  Steve Buscemi has a zombie Miriam Margolyes as a mum.Idiotic, neutered sub-Evil Dead comedy.

Silent Tongue (1993)  - Confused horror-western with River Phoenix, Richard Harris and Oirish carny Alan  Bates.

No Escape  (1994)  - One of the best SF films of the 90s. Casting the likes of Don Henderson, Jack Shepherd and Ian McNeice helps. Ernie Hudson, Michael Lerner and Lance Henriksen too.

Trance (1998) - It ain't perfect, being Michael Almereyda, it is quite arty, this is perhaps the  best Irish ish horror I've seen. Even  even though it's mainly shot in Yonkers, locations look right,  having Chris Walken be a huge Joe Dolan fan makes it feel more authentically Irish than most Irish films.
Twister (1989),a  strange but never endearingly so  comedy starring Lois Chiles and Harry  Dean  Stanton also has  weird Irish  threads,  plus Donal  Donnelly.

Babel  (1999)- Oddly-toned  Quebecois kiddy fantasy with Tcheky Karyo and the End of Days being outwitted by  a  kid  (played  by the one-time voice of George the moose in Arthur) and a tribe of immortal Garbage Pail Gnomes (or the children of Dungeons and Dragons' Dungeonmaster and Gwildor from Masters of the Universe - the Movie). Clearly intended to be basically Kevin and the Time Bandits, but having big gnome-heads instead of diminutive character talent robs it.

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